Lawmakers have revived calls to create a registry of convicted sexual criminals in the Philippines to protect children and other vulnerable populations.
Tingog partylist representatives Yedda Marie Romualdez and Jude Acidre have filed a bill that would mandate sex offenders submit their information into a database that would list them in the registry permanently. Should they fail to comply, they would face up to five years in prison and a PHP10,000 (US$179.05) fine.
The database would include the sex offender’s complete criminal history and a recent picture, full name and aliases, permanent and present home addresses, employment history, their fingerprints and a DNA sample, and their educational history, if applicable.
While the complete information in the database will not be made public, a website containing the sex offender’s name, photo, and most recent crime committed is being proposed.
Under the bill, sex offenders would have to register and regularly update their registration in each province, city, or town they reside, study or work. They must update the registry within 10 days of changing addresses, employment, or schools.
The Department of Justice would be in charge of the database and include individuals convicted in local and foreign courts, crimes against chastity, and other violations under the Anti-Violence Against Women and Children Act of 2004.
A bill to create a national registry of sex offenders was first proposed in Congress in 2015, but failed to garner enough support to move forward.